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Big data and supply chain management: A marriage of convenience

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conference contribution
posted on 12.05.2017, 12:22 by Roy MeritonRoy Meriton, Gary Graham
Big data is the new “guy about town.” Indeed, the buzz about Big Data and business intelligence (BI) as drivers of business information data collection and analysis continues to build steam. But it seems not everyone is taking notice. Whilst scholars in main are excited about the “fields of possibilities” big data and related analytics offer, in terms of optimising firm capabilities, supply chain scholars have been surprisingly quiet. In this work we hope to break this silence and we achieve this through a comprehensive survey of the literature with the aim of exposing the dynamics of big data analytics in the supply chain context. Our findings suggest that the benefits of a big data driven supply chain are many on the proviso that organisations can overcome their own myopic understanding of this socio-technical phenomenon. However, this is not to suggest a one-size fits all approach, our findings also reveal that adopting a big data strategy in the supply chain is a strategic decision and as such, given the idiosyncrasies of industries, firms should leverage these technologies in congruence with their core capabilities. Strategic fit between a firm core competences and its big data strategy creates causal ambiguity which can in turn lead to sustainable competitive advantage.



  • Loughborough University London

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20th International Manufacturing Symposium


MERITON, R.F. and GRAHAM, G., 2016. Big data and supply chain management: A marriage of convenience. Presented at the 20th International Manufacturing Symposium, Cambridge, UK, 29-30th September.


Institute for Manufacturing


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at:

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Cambridge, UK